Natural Geologic Signs Pointing Toward Gold
What should I look for when you are out prospecting that will tell you there are good amounts of gold present in the ground? we wish there was a simple answer to that question. It would make prospecting so much easier!
The problem is that gold occurs in so many different types of deposits. The indicators to look for in one place for one type of deposit don’t always work very well for another. As an example, visible vein quartz on the ground is a valuable indicator in some locations, yet you spots where there is so much vein quartz scattered everywhere that it becomes worthless when trying to pinpoint gold. On the other hand in other places that have good gold, but are essentially devoid of any visible vein quartz. There is no simple “one-size-fits-all” solution to what to look for in prospecting.
Still, while there is no one perfect answer, there are many useful indicators that prospectors can follow to lead them to gold. In this article, we are going to take a look at some different indicators that point toward the possibility of gold that you should keep in mind. Most of these indicators only work in certain places. No district has all of these indicators, but knowing these indicators will help you become a better and more successful prospector. Once you have learned them, it will be your job to evaluate and decide which of these apply in the mining district in which you are prospecting. So, let’s take a look at each of these gold indicators and what they can tell you.
Signs of Past Placer Mining, and How to Use Them
One of the very best places to look for gold are the regions where the old-time miners were successful at finding it previously. They often left very obvious signs of their digging and mining, but at times these can become overgrown and hidden. They never got all of the gold, and perhaps most importantly, the old timers never had tools and equipment at all like we have today.
Ground cuts and Stacked rocks
These are basically the trenches in the ground from which ground sluicing gets its name. These narrow trenches carried the water and gravels to the sluice box, and sometimes they were the sluice boxes themselves. Sometimes gold that escaped the sluice box is left within these cuts.
In narrow and steep locations there was little room for the old miners to move the rocks away. The old timers were forced to stack the rocks into walls alongside the stream they were mining in order to get them out of the way. Sometimes unworked gravels lie underneath these stacked rock walls. Keep an eye Piles of rocks. out for situations where these walls sit on gravel and not on the bedrock itself.
Areas stripped of their ground cover and top soils
These are often left behind as the mining operations processed these materials for their gold content. Sometimes tiny nuggets will get caught in the rough surface of the bedrock and this can be prime territory for metal detectors designed for nugget hunting.
In many locations the gravels contain rocks that are too large to pass through the sluice. These big rocks and large cobbles are tossed into piles that can cover hundreds of acres. The bedrock between them can be very productive, and if they are not too large and deep, you will find that the bedrock underneath them is often productive. It is worthwhile to roll the rocks aside and check out what is underneath.
Ponds and dams and Dry wash (dry blow) piles
Small-scale ground sluice operations and even larger hydraulic mining operations simply could not afford to bring water from long distances, so they built ponds close by to hold their water above the workings. When you find these, check for the placer workings nearby.
In the desert, where sluicing was not possible, dry washers were used to process the gravels. These leave distinctive piles of coarse and fine screened materials that are right next to each other. Dry washers are not as efficient as wet sluice operations, so check these piles for nuggets that were missed.
Potholes and shallow diggings
There are certain wind and water related processes that occur in desert environments that subtract light materials from the surface, leaving a concentration of heavy things like gold. They are worked with very shallow diggings.
Miners sometimes dug deep shafts, audits or other underground workings to access the concentrations of gold along bedrock buried beneath large amounts of overburden. Sometimes the spoil piles of these workings contain a decent amount of gold.
Hydraulic Mine Workings
When the old miners found large deposits of gravel, which had been left behind by the processes of erosion, if there was sufficient water nearby, they would dig trenches to bring it to the gravel and use the water pressure to wash the gravels away. Hard rock mine. Check any exposed bedrock very thoroughly because they frequently missed narrow fissures and cracks that can hold nuggets. Exposed bedrock in and around old workings is always worth checking out. Sometimes it can be very productive, though not always.
Modern prospectors with metal detectors have learned to scrape off areas that are highly productive in order to access the layers of soil and gravel below, which their detectors can see. These scrapes leave visible clearings and piles of pushed material. Many are still worth detecting. Areas adjoining to scrapes can be productive as well. Sometimes old dozer scrapes that have become overgrown can be spotted on satellite photos using Google Earth more easily than they can be seen on the ground.
Past Hard Rock Mining Signs
Hard rock operations, of course, have an additional issue of dangerous old workings. we do not recommend going inside old underground mines. The dangers of these mines can be invisible to the eye. Bad air or areas devoid of oxygen can kill quickly before you even realize it. Old shafts can be covered over with wood that is now rotted and may cave in beneath your feet.When looking in or around old mine workings, stay outside and be safe.
The underground excavations of mining operations nearly always leave coarse tailings piles on the surface. These tailings piles can actually contain quite a bit of gold. Many small miners could not afford to construct a mill, and so they had to sort their ore and ship only the highest grades to a custom milling facility. Oftentimes, visual sorting of the ore was not very efficient and they left good gold-bearing material behind. I know a number of prospectors who have done very well working with metal detectors on old mine dumps.
Important articles :
The best and most accurate gold detectors around the world
Metal Detector for Sale 2022
Is it possible to detect gold without a device?
Best Metal Detector for Gold and Silver 2022
Professional Metal Detector
Cheapest Gold Detector 2022
The most important methods of prospecting for gold
Best Metal Detector 2022
Gold Detector Price 2022
3D Imaging Gold Detector